It's no secret that on Friday, [url id="http://www.mtv.com/music/artist/green_day/artist.jhtml"]Green Day[/url]'s 21st Century Breakdown will be unleashed on the masses. And in celebration of that, we decided it would be fun to take a look back ... to the late 20th century.
Or, more specifically, the summer of 1994 — a time when Green Day were the fresh-faced kids on the rock block, a band of bratty outsiders who rose to prominence (even though they still toured in a Book Mobile) and drove another nail into the rock-star coffin, thanks to the strength of their breakout album, Dookie.
In some ways, it's difficult to believe that it's been 15 years since Green Day first blasted onto the scene; to many of us, the loping intro of "Longview" sounds just as fresh today as it did a decade-and-a-half ago. But, if you take a look at everything that's come and gone (and come back again) since Dookie's release, you suddenly realize, "Wow, it has been awhile."
In short, before Dookie, there was no punk revival, no forays into ska (No Doubt), no power-pop punk (Blink-182, et al), no nu-metal, no return of retro (the Strokes, the White Stripes), no emo-punk (Fall Out Boy, etc.). And, in a lot of ways, the album was an inspiration to most of the acts that brought those respective genres to the forefront.
And it's a testament to Green Day themselves that 15 years after they first broke out, they're bigger than they've ever been before. They are — thanks to American Idiot — one of the five hugest rock acts on the planet ... bigger than every band they've influenced.
So before they add to that legacy with Breakdown, we're dusting off a piece we first premiered back in 2004, on the 10th anniversary of Dookie. Have a look back (at a look back) at the album that put Green Day on the map, and changed the world in the process.